Today at around 17:27 CET ESA astronaut Samantha Cristoforetti will break the record for the longest uninterrupted spaceflight of an ESA astronaut. She was originally planned to return to Earth on 12 May but her Futura mission was extended after a problem with a Progress supply ferry.
The record was held until now by ESA astronaut André Kuipers who spent 193 days in space in 2012 for his PromISSe mission. His mission was also extended after a spacecraft problem. From his blog:
“A leak was found on the Soyuz capsule that was supposed to ferry the Expedition 31 crew up here. So the next Soyuz in line is being prepared quickly. It will not be ready before mid-march so the launch has been delayed by two months. This will delay landing for Dan, Anton and Anatoly. This also has consequences for myself, Don and Oleg. The delay is now six weeks and the official landing date is set for 1 July.”
Neither Samantha or André have the record for the most time an ESA astronaut has spent in space, that record goes to ESA astronaut Thomas Reiter with 350 days spent in space over two missions, 179 on space station Mir in 1995 and 171 on the International Space Station as part of Expedition 2 in 2006.